Survivals rates for kids with cancer have risen 9% since 2001, data has revealed.
An estimated 86% of kids aged up to 14 diagnosed with cancer in England in 2018 will be alive five years on, compared to 77% in 2001.
The figures from the Office for National Statistics also revealed the one-year survival rate would be 94%, compared to 90% in 2001.
Childhood cancers accounted for 0.5% of new cancer diagnoses in 2017, with leukaemia and brain cancers the most common forms.
A spokeswoman for Children with Cancer UK said: “Thanks to research funded by charities like our own, we have made huge progress in childhood cancer treatment in the past 30 years.”
Clare Laxton, of CLIC Sargent, said better treatments had improved survival rates.
But she said: “Treatments can be gruelling and the impact of cancer on a young life can be significant.”
The ONS data included survival estimates for 29 common cancers among adults.
And Macmillan Cancer Support warned survival rates for many, including breast, colon and prostate cancer, were “at a standstill”.
Dr Fran Woodward, from the Macmillan charity, said: “This stall is really worrying.”
Professor Stephen Powis, NHS medical director, said: “The cancer survival rate for adults in England is at an all-time high, while children’s survival is also on the rise.”
Suki’s joy as 2-year leukaemia ordeal ends
As she rang the end of treatment bell, seven-year-old Suki Corbett was a picture of happiness.
She had been through two-and-a-half years of gruelling treatment for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia at the Royal United Hospital in Bath.
Suki had high-dose chemotherapy, blood and platelet transfusions and steroid medication.
She suffered from weight loss and gain, constant nausea and vomiting, and lost her hair.
Her mum Rachel said: “In the early weeks of Suki’s diagnosis, I can remember watching films of other children ring their bell – it felt a whole other world away, but a world we were determined to get to.
“Reaching the end of her treatment has been far more emotional than I ever anticipated and seeing Suki ring the bell is such a huge milestone for her, for us all.
“It is wonderful to see her beaming smile.”
Suki, mum Rachel, dad Pete and sister Betsie, four, have been supported by Children with Cancer UK.
Suki, of Devizes, Wilts, wants to be a doctor as she thinks they are “amazing”.
She said: “It was horrid having the medicine but the doctors kept saying, ‘If you have it, it’ll make you better’, and it has.”
‘There’s still work to be done’
Dr Aine McCarthy
Cancer Research UK
It’s fantastic to see that more children are surviving cancer in the UK and doing so for longer.
But it’s important to remember there’s still work to be done, because for some types of children’s cancers, including bone and brain tumours, survival still remains relatively low.
Around 240 children under the age of 15 still die from cancer in the UK every year. And those who do survive often experience serious long-term side effects from their treatment, like infertility.
There have been some exciting advances in treatments, with the approval of CAR-T cell therapy on the NHS, and developments in reducing hearing loss after treatment.
And at Cancer Research UK, we recently announced our investment in a large, international research project that aims to discover new drug targets for brain tumours in children.
By funding research like this and much more, we hope to develop new treatments and to bring forward the day when every child survives cancer with a good quality of life.